The Bahamas Financial Services Board was inaugurated in April 1998 and officially opened its doors in July of the same year. During the last 2 1/2 years of operation, the Board has been successful in elevating the profile and enhancing the perception of The Bahamas as a leading international financial services centre – the “jurisdiction of choice”.

BFSB stands proud in its achievements to date, with all of its stated objectives firmly met:

(i) establishing The Bahamas “brand” in the financial services community

(ii) developing and coordinating promotional strategies and programs of the Bahamas financial services sector

(iii) informing and educating service professionals and intermediaries globally on services offered by The Bahamas

(iv) positioning The Bahamas as a premier “jurisdiction of choice”

(v) opening and nurturing communication lines with key trade and business media – globally and domestically

(vi) creating awareness and support domestically for the industry

In March 1999, BFSB began production of a quarterly newsletter, BFSB News Briefs, and in March 2000 launched its industry www site. Both represent important components of a coordinated marketing plan.

Increasing globalisation of business, the emergence of new liberalised trading arrangements and vast changes in communication and information technology have dramatically altered the international business environment. These changes provide the financial services sector with tremendous opportunities and new sets of challenges.
The Government and the private sector of The Bahamas have embraced a common vision and will continue to work closely together to achieve clearly defined goals for the development of the financial services industry. The Bahamas “brand” – already firmly established – must be entrenched in the international markets. It must be clearly presented and understood in order to maintain a leadership position.

Several global issues challenge the financial services industry, including OECD, FATF and FSF initiatives, European Union Tax Harmonisation, Money Laundering, and Client Confidentiality. It is essential that efforts be stepped up to meet increased competitive
demands, and to maintain established international standards of this important industry.

The official launch of the Bahamas International Securities Exchange (BISX), for which BFSB was the Executing Agency, already is enhancing the profile of The Bahamas’ financial services industry. BISX marketing efforts – as well as that of the Government – will be leveraged to build a cohesive, effective programme to promote the financial services sector.

BFSB Membership

BFSB has been able to create – and maintain – a strong membership base. Incorporating all segments of the financial services industry, membership expanded by 35% in the first two years of operation, and remained steady throughout 2000. Serious prospects already targetted would indicate that BFSB will be able to maintain steady membership growth in the years ahead.

Benefits and Privileges of Membership:-

-Recognition as a committed contributor to the growth and development of the industry

-Recognition as a significant corporate entity within The Bahamas’ financial services industry

-Opportunity to participate in defining the focus and issues of importance to the industry

-Unique opportunities to promote your company and services internationally

-Expansion of international market contacts for your business services

-Information about your company on the international database and web site of The Bahamas Financial Services Industry

-Modest individual cost of support, major industry benefits

-Access to collateral material

(See BFSB News Article of 1/19 on “Year in Review” for a comprehensive report on achievements during the year 2000. Additional membership information, including an application form, can be accessed under About BFSB on our home page)